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Publication numberUS3088322 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 7, 1963
Filing dateDec 28, 1959
Priority dateDec 28, 1959
Publication numberUS 3088322 A, US 3088322A, US-A-3088322, US3088322 A, US3088322A
InventorsMarggraff Eugene A
Original AssigneeMarggraff Eugene A
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Golf practice apparatus
US 3088322 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

May 7, 1963 E. A. MARGGRAFF GOLF PRACTICE APPARATUS Filed Dec. 28, 1959 FIG.



EUGENE A.MARGGRAFF /KM W ATTORNEY 3,088,322 GOLF PRACTICE APPARATUS Eugene A. Marggralf, Sugar Loaf, Winona, Minn. Filed Dec. 28, 1959, Ser. No. 862,395 Claims. (Cl. 7338l)) This invention relates to a game apparatus, and more particularly to a golf game which may be used either indoors or out to improve and measure a golfers swing or stroke.

Because of space limitations in homes or yards, it has been relatively impossible for a golfer to practice hitting a regulation golf ball except on golf courses or on driving ranges. Heretofore, many practice devices have been proposed in an effort to simulate and measure the exact course and distance a golf ball would travel if it were hit on an actual golf course. However, none of them have been able to combine the necessary features of realism, accuracy and simplicity.

It is therefore a primary object of this invention to provide a simple game apparatus which allows a golfer to hit a regulation golf ball with a full natural swing and which gives an indication of the distance the ball would have traveled and the golfers swing characteristics.

A further object of the invention resides in the provision of a novel golf game apparatus which simulates the sensation of hitting a golf ball on an open course but yet requires relatively little area indoors or out.

Another object of the invention is to produce a simple sturdy mechanical golf game apparatus which gives an indication of the path a golf ball would take, whether it be straight, hook or slice.

In the drawings:

FIG. 1 is a top plan view of the game apparatus;

FIG. 2 is a front elevation of the game apparatus as shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a plan view of an alternate construction of the game; and

FIG. 4 is a fragmentary sectional view taken along lines 44 of FIG. 3.

With reference to FIG. 1, the game indicated at 1% includes a base 11 of suitable metal or equivalent rigid material. Slideably mounted on the base are elongated indicators 12 and '13. Each of the indicators has a long slot or guideway 14 therein through which pass fixed guide pins 15.

In the present instance, the indicators 12 and 13 are shown to be formed from metal stampings and have sides 16 (FIG. 2) around their periphery to give the required rigidity. To promote easy sliding action, the indicators are supported above the base 11 by bushings 17 of nylon or other suitable material which surround the guide pins 15.

The indicators 12 and .13 are biased to move in the direction X by springs 18 connected to cars 19 thereon and to angle clips 20 on the base =11.

The indicators are normally held against the tension of springs 18 in an initial or cocked position as shown by the solid lines in FIG. 1 by a pair of arms 21 and 22. The arms are pivotally mounted on spools 23 above the base .11 by rivet pins 24. A rounded end 25 of each of the arms is provided with a notch 26 which is adapted to engage a complementary corner 27 of the indicators. Thus, when an arm notch 26 is in engagement with its corresponding indicator corner 27, a latch is formed thereby preventing the indicator from moving in the direction X.

To hold the arms 21 and 22 in contact with their corresponding indicators 21 and 22, torsion springs 28 surround the mounting spools 23 and have one leg 29 connected to the base 11 and the other leg 30 in contact with assaszz Patented May '7, 1963 ice the arm. As shown in FIG. 1, the arm 21 is biased by a spring 28 to rotate in a clockwise direction such that its end 25 will engage the indicator 12. On the other hand, arm 22 is biased counter-clockwise to contact the indicator 13.

If either of the arms 21 or 22 is caused to rotate against the action of its respective spring, the notch 26 will move out of engagement with the corner 27 of the indicator and allow the rounded end 25 thereof to ride on a cam surface 31 of the indicator as the latter is moved forwardly under the tension of its spring 18. This is shown by dotted lines in FIG. 1.

Connected to the ends 33 of the arms are flexible cord sections 34 and 35. The chord links 34 and 35 may be formed of a single strand to which, at the mid-point between the arms, is attached a cord section 36 having a ball 37 on the end thereof. In effect, a flexible Y-shaped linkage is formed with the sections 34 and 35 forming the upper legs thereof and the section 36 the middle lower leg.

When the ball is hit, the force is transmitted through the cord links to cause the arms to pivot away from the indicators against the tension of the arm springs 28. Momentary release of the latches formed by the notches 26 and corners 27, allows the indicators 12 and 13 to slide forwardly. The harder the ball is hit the more arms 21 and 22 wil spring open and the farther indicators 12 and 13 will slide forwardly. The distance the indicators move is limited by the frictional drag of the arm ends 25 riding against the wedge-type cam surfaces 31. As shown in FIG. 1, the cam surfaces 31 are wedged in the direction of biased movement of the indicators.

Upon coming to rest, the vertically extending tabs 38 on the front of the indicators measure the distance the ball would have traveled by aligning with scale graduations 39 marked on the base 11. The cam sections '31 are correlated with the tension of springs .18 and friction of the arm ends 25 to give an accurate reading of distance on the scale 39. The more the arms are pivoted by the action of the cam sections 31, the greater will be the resistance to further movement of the indicators because of increased pressures developed by arm springs 28.

In actual use, if the ball is hit directly parallel to the mid-point axis between the indicators in the direction X, the force component transmitted to each of the linkage legs 34 and 35 will be equal. Consequently the arms 21 and 22 will pivot equally and the distance the indicators 12 and 13 will travel will be equal.

On the other hand, assuming a right handed golfer swings from the outside in and hits the ball in the direction Y, which swing normally imparts a slice spin, the greatest component of force will be transmitted along the leg 34. Thus, arm 21 will pivot a greater distance than arm 22. As a result, indicator 12 will move forwardly a greater distance than the indicator 13 (dotted position on FIG. 1) thereby giving an immediate indication that the swing was improper and the ball in true fiight most likely would have sliced.

Should the golf club strike the ball in the direction Z, a greater component of force will be transmitted to the arm 22 causing it to pivot a greater amount than the arm 21. The indicator 13 would move a greater distance than the indicator 12 and depict a hooking tendency.

After striking the ball, the golfer may reload or reset the indicators to their initial or starting position by using his foot to push against the vertical tabs 38. The indicators are pushed rearwardly against the tension of springs 18 until the arm notches 26 move into latching engagement with the indicator corners 27.

Another embodiment of the invention is shown on FIG. 3 wherein revolving cam indicators 40 are substituted for the sliding indicators 12 and 13. The cams 4t) are biased to turn counter-clockwise by a torsion spring 41 about a pin 42. The arm ends 42 have a tooth 43 engaging a notch 44 in the cam to prevent rotation thereof until the arm is activated. Upon activation, the arm tooth 43 moves out of engagement with the cam allowing it to rotate. The spring 28 then returns the arm to contact with the turning indicator. The cam surface 45 gradually increases in diameter to increase the spring pressure of the arm thereagainst.

In this embodiment of FIG. 3, graduations 46 for distance are marked peripherally around the cam and align with a pointer 47 on the base to get the proper reading. The, amount of unbalance in unwinding the cams indicates the golfers swing tendency. A peg 48 is used to rewind and reset the cams.

While not specifically shown, the game device may be held in position outdoors by long nails or prongs forced into the soil. Indoors, the device may be provided with a flat extension plate flush with the floor on which the golfer stands, his weight keeping the device from moving. Other methods of securing the game indoors may be used to suit thefacilities available.

For ease ofillustration, the indicators and arms have been shown to be made from metal, however their function could be performed with high-impact plastic materials and the like. In like manner, the type and manner of springs biasing the indicators and arms may be modified and yet achieve the same result.

As a further alternative, only one indicator may be used to give an indication of the distance the ball would have traveled.

It is to be understood that the form of the invention shown and described is to be taken as the preferred embodiment and that various changes in shape, size and arrangement of parts may be resorted to without departure from the spirit or scope of the invention.


1. A game apparatus comprising, a base, an indicator moveably mounted on said base means for moving said indicator from a cocked to an indicative position, a positive latch mechanism for holding said indicator in said cocked position and preventing it from moving, a ball operably connected to said latch and adapted when hit to open said latch, and means also operably connected to said ball and engageable with said indicator for limiting movement thereof to said indicative position in relation to the force with which said ball is hit.

2. A game apparatus comprising a base, a pair of independently moveable indicators spaced apart horizontally mounted on said base, means for moving said indicators from an initial position to an indicating position, a moveable actuating arm on said base for each of said indicators, each of said arms having one end thereof moveable into and out of engagement with its respective indicator and adapted to hold said indicator in its initial position, biasing means for urging each of said arms toward and, into engagement with its respective indicator, a flexible linkage extending between other ends of said arms, a ball connected to said linkage substantially at the mid point thereof, said ball when hit substantially parallel to a mid-point axis between said arms exerting a relatively uniform force on said linkage to cause said arms to move out of engagement with said indicators an equal amount against their biasing means, said ball when hit at an angle to said axis causing said linkage to pull with. greater force on one of said arms than the other thereby allowing the indicator associated therewith to move a greater distance to indicatingv position than the opposite indicator, and means engageable with said indicators for limiting movement thereof at their indicating position. 7

3. A game apparatus as claimed in claim 2 wherein; said arms are pivotally mounted and said biasing means includes springs which urge said arms toward said indicators, said indicators having cam surfaces which are engaged by said arms as the indicators are moved from their initial toward their indicative positions after the arms are initially moved out of engagement therewith by the force transmitted from said ball, said cam surfaces being shaped to gradually pivot the arms against the tension of said springs to cause said arms to exert gradually increasing force against continued movement of said indicators.

4. A game apparatus as claimed in claim 2, wherein said indicators are slideably mounted and have a cam surface which is somewhat wedge-shaped in the direction of the indicative position. v

5. A golf game apparatus comprising a base, an indicator moveably mounted on said base, means. for moving said indicator from an initial to an indicative position, said indicator having a cam surface, an arm associated with said indicator pivoted intermediate its length, means biasing one end of said arm into contact with said indicator, means on said arm end to hold said indicator in the initial position, a flexible linkage connected to said arm, a golf ball connected to said linkage, said ball when hit pivoting said arm away from said indicator thereby allowing it to move to indicative position, said arm after pivoting away then returning through the action of said biasing means to engage said indicator cam surface in sliding contact as it moves therepast to exert a braking action on continued movement of the indicator.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,240,198 Guthrie et a1 Sept. 18, 1917

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1240198 *Jun 27, 1916Sep 18, 1917Charles Guthrie GuthrieMachine for registering the trajectories of captive balls.
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3399891 *Dec 31, 1964Sep 3, 1968Andrew J. MccormickFootball practice reaction mechanism
US4119318 *Apr 27, 1977Oct 10, 1978Dolcofin Ltd.Golf ball flight indicating device
US4261564 *Sep 27, 1979Apr 14, 1981Marvin Glass & AssociatesPractice apparatus for punting, passing or kicking a ball
U.S. Classification473/144
International ClassificationA63B69/00
Cooperative ClassificationA63B69/0084
European ClassificationA63B69/00T2B